Dominant and Efficient – On the Relevance of Efficiencies in Abuse of Dominance Cases
Hans Wolfgang Friederiszick
E.CA Economics; ESMT European School of Management and Technology
E.CA Economics; Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich - Munich Graduate School of Economics (MGSE)
December 19, 2012
ESMT White Paper No. WP-12-01
The European Commission’s policy on the relevance of efficiency considerations in abuse of dominance cases (Article 102 TFEU) is not well settled. In an attempt to give guidance on that matter we address that topic from two different angles: First, we review EC soft law provisions and recent decisions. Based on this review we find that efficiency defences are of limited importance under the current practice. They are of relevance in the growing number of IT related cases but not in others. Second, for the example of low price strategies, we then explore business practitioners’ views on the relevance of pro- and anti-competitive motives. Based on a survey among EMBA students we find that low price strategies are indeed frequently used. The motives are diverse though, often procompetitive and in line with antitrust compliance, i.e. low price strategies are rarely considered advisable for leading firms. Policy conclusions are drawn.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 60
Keywords: antitrust policy, efficiency defence, predatory pricing, business view, survey
JEL Classification: K21, L21, L40
Date posted: December 23, 2012 ; Last revised: January 23, 2013
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